Obsessed with computers since his teenage years, George Nedwick dreamed of a career in the fast-growing IT world and worked tirelessly to achieve his goals. Since founding George Jon in 1997, his passion for developing and perfecting new technologies has continued to grow and flourish in lockstep with the business. Building and nourishing vibrant relationships with clients and vendors is the backbone of George Jon’s success, as evidenced by the many long-term relationships the company boasts. Navigating the many learning curves and teachable moments that confront every growing enterprise, the journey from start-up to industry leader has been both satisfying and informative. The growing pains endured, and successes earned over the last two decades have made George Jon the pioneer it is today, serving as the global leader in platforms, processes, and products for the eDiscovery market. The business blossomed organically, driven by ripe opportunity, evolving needs, and industry foresight.
Founded as a general IT firm by Mr. Nedwick, the early days of George Jon were spent on the well-worn streets of Fulton Market, predating the slick Google executives and renowned gourmet chefs who mill about nowadays. Morning commutes required one to avoid cloudy street puddles of pork fat and daredevil forklift operators, both byproducts of the meatpacking warehouses that lined the street. Days revolved around solving IT problems, wiring server closets, installing software from floppy drives, backing up networks to Jaz drives, and building a client base, all amazingly accomplished on monitors with 800×600 resolution! After work, perhaps we’d sneak over to the Fulton Lounge (once the only bar on the street; today, the space is home to The Aviary) for a drink before heading home and recharging for the next day.
As George Jon developed relationships with clients, partners and vendors, market trends and employees came and went, with the right people sticking around and proving integral to growth and success. Early employees like Ken Kang (Director of Procurement), Kaya Kowalczyk (now our Director of Business Operations), Joe Moberly (currently our Director of EDSM), and Marlei Taylor (Case Advantage Lead & Internal IT Engineer) remain critical to daily operations and ensure institutional continuity that is rare in the modern workplace. Clients like kCura (now Relativity) and Norvax (now GoHealth) evolved in tandem with GJ, providing valuable opportunities and synergistic relationships that blossomed over time. And inquisitive partners like Dell saw the value and promise of George Jon’s expertise, mining our knowledge base to create an entirely new product market.
The evolution of the eDiscovery market over the last decade has been central to our story, with digital workflow (and its memory-intensive needs) quickly leaving physical paper trails in the dust and requiring data systems that did not yet exist. With our background in nascent IT infrastructure, we were naturally adept at building high-performance, high-demand networks that easily outperformed anything available off-the-shelf. This competency and its potential were proven through our work for another growing Chicago business, kCura.
kCura engaged GJ to support their day-to-day internal systems, including email, network infrastructure, and development platforms, effectively functioning as their IT department, and enabling their internal team to focus on developing what would become the Relativity platform. Many days and nights were spent outside their server closet on the infamous office “couch,” performing hardware maintenance and software updates.
As the relationship evolved, competencies became apparent and needs were identified, which led to us designing and implementing new, state-of-the-art infrastructure for kCura’s hosting platform. Following this successful deployment, we partnered with the kCura team to develop universal standards for Relativity, and kCura began recommending GJ’s services to their customer base for the design and implementation of optimized eDiscovery infrastructure.
Parallel to this relationship, George Jon had also been growing a partnership with Dell, the global leader in computer hardware and peripherals. After years of sourcing hardware from Dell for clients and pushing the boundaries of existing technical capabilities, we began working directly with Dell engineers to custom-design systems that could meet the above-and-beyond demands of the eDiscovery world. Re-engineering componentry for faster performance and greater storage capacity. Establishing proven, real-world standards and integrating them directly into infrastructure. And building a quick-implementation deployment system for global distribution to a worldwide client base.
The many years of R&D we spent working with the Dell team and fine-tuning systems in real-world environments informed the development and perfection of the GJ Kit Collection for eDiscovery. Our symbiotic relationship with Dell has driven hardware sales of these proprietary systems, establishing the benchmark for performance and service in the industry.
All told, our team has seen firsthand and been actively involved in driving the eDiscovery realm from antiquated desktop systems to mission-critical, market-specific platforms that rip through gigabytes of data, seamlessly store petabytes of files, and ensure world-class security and redundancy for high-profile, globe-trotting clients. Our baby is all grown up!